CHICAGO, Ill. (October 10, 2016) -- The Fighting Illini have not lost in the 2016-17 season, and there was no chance those winning ways would halt Monday.
Illinois began the final round of the Northern Intercollegiate with a 39-shot lead, and, predictably, closed everything out. A 3-over 287 to finish was enough to jump the margin even higher, as the team ended the two days at Beverly Country Club in Chicago at 7 under and with a 53-shot victory.
The win is the Illini’s third in as many fall events and continues to show that the loss of star seniors Charlie Danielson and Thomas Detry really has been no issue at all on performance.
The group, No. 1 in the Golfweek/Sagarin college men’s rankings, has yet to lose this season, and at the Northern Intercollegiate it not only dominated in a team win but also boasted the individual title.
Freshman Giovanni Tadiotto, of Belgium, took that honor as he posted a second consecutive 68 to win by two at 5 under. The title is the first of the Belgian’s Illinois career, in just his third career appearance.
And yet, Tadiotto still has zero career starts. For the third straight tournament, the freshman played as an individual, meaning his score did not count toward the team total. That didn’t play as big a role in his T-64 and T-29 showings the past two times, but this was a win!
Even without Tadiotto, Illinois still dominated. The Illini took the top-three counting spots on the scoreboard, as Edoardo Lipparelli (second, 3 under), Dylan Meyer (third, 2 under) and Nick Hardy (fourth, 1 under) ensured an Illinois sweep in the sub-par scoring.
Bryan Baumgarten (seventh, 3 over) and Michael Feagles (T-11, 10 over) rounded out the counting Illinois lineup.
Indiana, with Brendon Doyle’s T-8 at 1 over leading the way, finished a distant (really distant) second at 46 over. Marquette placed third at 50 over and boasted the best non-Illini finisher in Oliver James Farrell at even par (good for solo fifth).
The Illini win follows up a 27-shot triumph at this event from last year. The tournament was moved from its 2015 location of Rich Harvest Farms, as the Sugar Grove, Ill., site will play host to the 2017 men’s and women’s NCAA Championships, and thus is disallowed from putting on Division I tournaments during the 2016-17 college season.
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